Forty Percent of Social Media Accounts Are Spam
Every so often I’ll get an uptick in followers on my Twitter account. This makes me happy.
It also makes me curious about who might be interested in my 140 character missives.
And more often than not I discover it’s a bunch of pornbots linking out to fleshy sites.
Tumblr has this problem too. They’ve cleaned it up a lot but we still get a fair amount of likes from accounts that redirect to walls of naked bodies doing naked body things.
I’m not alone though. After years of clogging email inboxes, spam is infiltrating the social Web. According to Mark Risher, CEO of an anti-spam software company called Impermium, in an interview with Businessweek, up to 40% of social media accounts are spam.
About 8 percent of messages sent via social pages are spam, approximately twice the volume of six months ago, [Risher] says. Spammers use the sharing features on social sites to spread their messages. Click on a spammer’s link on Facebook (FB), and it may ask you to “like” or “share” a page, or to allow an app to gain access to your profile.
Facebook and Twitter have hired programmers and security specialists to deflect the flotsam. “Tens of millions of dollars are spent on our site-integrity systems, including hundreds of full-time employees,” says Facebook spokesman Frederic Wolens.
In January, Facebook sued advertising network Adscend Media, accusing it of sending unsolicited messages to Facebook users. A typical lure cited in the suit: “You will be SHOCKED when you see this video. Simply “Like” this page to see the video.” By clicking on a link, some users may unwittingly “like” the spam, a practice security experts call “likejacking.” At least 280,214 users were tricked into interacting with spam. About 80 percent of Adscend’s monthly revenue of $1.2 million comes from Facebook scams, according to the suit.
Businessweek: ‘Likejacking’: Spammers Hit Social Media.